Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News For February 12, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Workers at California Flour Plant Join Teamsters Local 166  Teamster.org  ...On February 3, workers at Ardent Mills in Colton, California voted by a 2-1 margin to join Teamsters Local 166. The workers make and handle flour. The vote was 15-8 and there are 24 workers in the bargaining unit. “The workers are desperately seeking respect and fairness on the job and we will work hard to negotiate a contract that addresses their needs,” said Mike Bergen, Local 166 Secretary-Treasurer...

Sony Takes Tax Breaks; Undercuts NYC Workers  Labor Press  ...Sony, the multi-billion-dollar entertainment giant with holdings around the globe, is being accused this week of viciously undercutting local movers, and making it increasingly difficult for workers to provide for their families. Members of Teamsters Local 814 rallied on East 25th Street and Park Avenue on Tuesday morning, to protest Sony's decision to hire a "fly-by-night" outfit to execute its move to 11 Madison Avenue...

Teamsters Ask 11th Circ. For Sanctions On Amerijet  Law360  ...The International Brotherhood of Teamsters have called Amerijet’s bid to reverse a decision forcing arbitration of a labor dispute with its overseas pilots “frivolous” and “vexatious,” urging the Eleventh Circuit to scrap the appeal and award the union attorneys’ fees. In a motion for sanctions Wednesday, the Teamsters told the appeals court that it “already decided all the dispositive” issues in the case..

Teamsters File Lawsuit Against WV “Right-to-Work” Law, Say Lawmakers Have Something to Hide  We Party Patriots  ...As West Virginia moves towards “Right-to-Work,” the Teamsters union has filed a lawsuit claiming that the State Senate did not abide by a Freedom of Information Act request that sought emails between Senate leadership and professors at West Virginia University.  Last week, the House passed the “Establishing West Virginia Workplace Freedom Act” by a 54-46 margin after vicious debate...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

South Africa: TUT workers’ strike finally ends  The Citizen  ...Striking Tshwane University of Technology workers will return to work on Monday following weeks of protests relating to outsourcing. TUT management and leaders of the Outsourcing Must Fall movement T had been in deadlocked negotiations for weeks but last night reached an agreement. The university said it had agreed to the insourcing of outsourced services as well as a minimum wage of R5000...

TTIP Will Damage Birmingham's Interests - City Councilors  Sputnik News  ...Birmingham city councilors have warned that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) could prevent them from awarding contracts and tenders worth US$1.44 billion. The West Midlands city is only the latest local authority in Britain to express concerns over the extremely opaque Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership Agreement...

Speaker Ryan: Not enough votes for TPP trade deal  CBS  ...House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, said Thursday that the landmark Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal doesn't have enough votes to pass Congress right now. "I don't think the votes are there right now because of the concerns about what's in the TPP," Ryan told reporters at his weekly press conference. "The point is we shouldn't bring something up if we're not confident that we have the support"...

Cancer Patient Lays Bare the Danger of TPP and the "Pharma Bro" Problem  Huffington Post  ...Smirking "Pharma Bro" Martin Shkreli, who had jacked up medicine prices from $13.50 to $750 per tablet, invoked his right against self-incrimination when hauled before Congress in a fraud investigation. Meanwhile, two cancer patients were arrested at the headquarters of the Pharma lobby protesting another unconscionable act of Pharma greed: the 'death sentence' clauses the industry pushed into the Trans-Pacific Partnership...

Ford Canada’s CEO to raise concerns with Ottawa over Trans-Pacific Partnership  The Star  ...The CEO of Ford’s Canadian operations says risks posed by the Trans-Pacific Partnership to the automotive manufacturing sector are among topics she plans to raise in a meeting with federal government officials later this month. Ontario, which relies heavily on the auto manufacturing sector, has been losing new investment to Mexico and the southern U.S., where labour costs are lower...

Is the TPP a Threat to Human Rights?  AFLCIO  ...Just days before the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade and investment deal was signed, a human rights experts warned against it. The TPP is a serious threat to human rights that no country should sign, advised United Nations independent expert on human rights, Dr. Alfred de Zayas. “Investor-state dispute settlement arbitrations [are] fundamentally imbalanced and unjust”...

UAW Prez: Yet another reason to reject the TPP  People's World  ...Mexican corruption, tied to its trade with the U.S. and its repression of its own workers, is yet another reason for the U.S. Congress to reject the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership "free trade" pact, Auto Workers President Dennis Williams says. Mexican workers - with few exceptions - toil under government-allied unions that do not stand up to employers and that for years have let firms exploit workers...

Greek police are firing tear gas at angry farmers protesting in Athens  Business Insider  ...Greek riot police fired tear gas at farmers protesting against pension reform plans on Friday who hurled stones at the agriculture ministry in central Athens ahead of a major demonstration outside parliament scheduled for later in the day. Under the planned reform of the pension system demanded by Greece's international lenders, farmers face a tripling of their social security contributions and higher income tax...  

Women: the future of the trade union movement?  USI  ...A whole new generation of women activists have entered the labour movement. Whether they’re teachers in Chicago or garment workers in Bangladesh, women are taking on the bosses and learning valuable organising lessons. Women bring new ideas into the movement. Campaigns that have had a high level of participation from women have tended to add new, creative ideas to the campaigning toolkit...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Governor vetoes prevailing wage, right to work bills  MetroNews  ...Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has vetoed both the right to work and prevailing wage bills. On Thursday, the governor sent a letter to state Senate President Bill Cole (R-Mercer, 06) expressing his disapproval of the Workplace Freedom Act (SB 1). Tomblin said he didn’t believe making West Virginia a right to work state would create jobs or help the economy...

West Virginia Moves Toward Becoming The Next State With Voter ID  Think Progress  ...A controversial bill that would require West Virginians to show valid photo identification at the polls is making its way through the state’s Republican-led Legislature, and opponents say it’s likely to advance within the next few months. On Thursday, the West Virginia House’s judiciary committee passed HB4013, which would require voters to show one of several types of photo ID cards before voting... 

Flint Residents Demand State Do More As Snyder Releases His Budget  Think Progress  ...Flint residents protested at the capitol as Gov. Rick Snyder (R) released this year’s budget proposal. In it was $195 million dedicated to the city’s needs. All of those funds would come on top of the $37.4 million that the legislature has already approved for Flint this year. Progress Michigan, a nonprofit organizing group, doesn’t think that goes far enough...

House kills prevailing wage for public projects  Union Leader  ...The House killed an attempt to require that workers receive the prevailing wage on all state construction projects. House Bill 1641 was killed on a vote of 181-138. Supporters argued the bill would put more money into the state’s economy and boost wages for local workers without increasing the cost of projects...

Right-to-work amendment fails in Alabama House  Montgomery Advertiser  ...The Alabama House of Representatives on Thursday narrowly rejected a measure that would put the state’s right to work law in the state Constitution, a part of the House Republican caucus' agenda. The chamber voted 60 to 24 for the measure. The constitutional amendment needed 63 affirmative votes to pass...

North Carolina Voting Rights Fight Moves From the Courtroom to the Streets  Truthout  ...As the federal trial over North Carolina's restrictive voter ID law wrapped up this week in Winston-Salem, the North Carolina NAACP - the lead plaintiff suing the state over its ID requirements - was getting ready to shift its fight for voting rights from the courtroom to the streets. The civil rights group serves as the lead organizer of the annual Mass Moral March on Raleigh...

Oregon Senate approves minimum wage hike after marathon debate  Oregon Live  ...The Oregon Senate approved monumental increases to the minimum wage Thursday night, a major breakthrough on what's become the defining issue of the legislative session. It was a watershed moment in for Democrats, who after months of talk muscled through a bill they said would help people in Portland meet surging costs of living...

Senate re-approves paid sick leave, again  Times Argus  ...Senate lawmakers once again approved a bill requiring employers to grant their workers paid sick leave. Wednesday afternoon, the Senate approved H.187, which will require all employers to offer three days of paid sick leave a year, beginning in 2018. “Tens of thousands of working Vermonters who have long lacked such basic protections as paid sick days eagerly await the bill being signed"...

UCSD researchers: Voter ID laws suppress Dems, minorities  San Diego Union-Tribune  ...Researchers from the University of California San Diego have created a new statistical model indicating that voter identification laws do what detractors claim — reduce turnout for minorities and those on the political left. Overall, the researchers found, strict ID laws cause a reduction in Democratic turnout by 8.8 percentage points, compared to a reduction of 3.6 percentage points for Republicans...

 

U.S. LABOR

Carrier in Indy, UTEC in Huntington to move units to Mexico, costing 2,100 jobs  IndyStar  ...Two Indiana plants that make products for the heating, ventilating and air conditioning industry are shifting their manufacturing operations to Mexico, which will cost about 2,100 workers their jobs, company officials announced Wednesday. The company’s plan is being discussed with United Steelworkers Local 1999, which represents the employees who face termination...

NLRB v. Allegheny  Politico  ...The metal maker Allegheny Technologies Inc. will fight vigorously an NLRB complaint, filed Thursday, that alleges its six-month lockout of 2,200 steelworkers is unlawful. The United Steelworkers union appeared to use the threat of an NLRB proceeding as a bargaining chip in recent months. It said in December that the agency would soon issue a complaint, but the two sides went through several unsuccessful bargaining sessions with federal mediators before the complaint was finally issued...

NJ Transit, Rail Unions on Collision Course Toward Possible Strike  WNYC  ...Rail workers descended upon the Newark headquarters of NJ Transit Wednesday, using the public comment period of the agency's monthly board meeting to urge leaders to reach a deal before a March 13 strike deadline. "I urge this board to assist us in any way to avert a possible work stoppage," said Stephen Burkert, the general chairman of the SMART union transportation division and a spokesman for the coalition representing rail workers...

Cafeteria workers at Intel rally over low wages  USA Today  ...Close to 100 Intel cafeteria workers and supporters held a rally outside of the chip maker's headquarters in Santa Clara, Calif. Wednesday afternoon to highlight the growing inability of low-wage workers to survive in an area where rents are rising to stratospheric heights. “Here in the economy in Silicon Valley, we struggle. I’m a single mom of two children. I had to move in with my ex-mother-in-law because I can’t afford to rent my own apartment,” said Nahima Aguiniga...

For First Time In Years, Labor Resistance Is on the Rise in America  Alternet  ...Industrial unrest in the United States was more frequent and widespread last year, according to annual data released Wednesday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. There were twelve “major work stoppages” measured by BLS, up from eleven the year before. The disputes involved about 47,000 workers—a year-over-year increase of 13,000...

UAW workers in Flint honor 'battles' of predecessors with White Shirt Day  MLive  ...A group of 50 men started the Flint Sit-Down Strike inside General Motors' Fisher Body Plant 2, beginning a 44-day work stoppage that would end when GM recognized the United Auto Workers as the bargaining agent for hourly workers. "White Shirt offer us an opportunity to celebrate and reflect on a landmark historical event that happen by ordinary folks both men and women who had common pain and adversity, but had huge fight in them and wanted to make a change"...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

Pharmaceutical corporations rake in billions on pneumonia vaccines while millions in poor countries go without  Salon  ...The business practices of the pharmaceutical industry have recently come to light, as “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli fills the headlines. Hoping to make $1 billion, the 32-year-old pharmaceutical executive and former hedge fund manager increased the price of a drug used to treat life-threatening parasitic infections by more than 5,500 percent. Yet these kinds of practices go much deeper, and have persisted much longer in the industry...

'Adds Insult to Homicide': Cleveland Wants $500 for Ambulance That Carried Tamir Rice Away  Common Dreams  ...Renewed outraged has been stirred by revelations that the city of Cleveland has attempted to extract a $500 payment from the family of Tamir Rice for EMS services provided when the 12-year-old boy was fatally shot by police officers in 2014 while he played in a local park. Subodh Chandra, the Rice family's attorney, described the indifferent behavior of city officials as "breathtaking" and new kind of assault against the victim, his family, and the community...

The Republican Plan To Cut Welfare With Just 51 Votes  Think Progress  ...Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), chairman of the House Committee on the Budget, has said that he and his fellow Republicans are leaning toward using the budget reconciliation process to reform the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), what became of AFDC after welfare reform enacted in the 1990s...

The Koch Brothers' Dirty War on Solar Power  Rolling Stone  ...After decades of false starts, solar power in America is finally poised for its breakthrough moment. But the birth of Big Solar poses a grave threat to those who profit from burning fossil fuels. And investor-owned utilities, together with Koch-brothers-funded front groups like American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), are mounting a fierce, rear-guard resistance...

Retiree Health Insurance

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